When I saw this question in UPSC essay paper 2013 I was very happy , It gives you freedom to write and allows you to paint beyond the lines , but I am a quote-o-holic and I really love quotes too much and I know that in Internet quotes are often wrongly attributed .
Misquoting and bogus quotes are every where , what happened here too is that words are tweaked and simplified,there is actually no proof of Gandhi Ji every saying these lines verbatim .
The closest verifiable remark we have from Gandhi ji is this:
“If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do.”
In this open-ed Falser Words Were Never Spoken by Brian Morton he interprets,
Gandhi is telling us that personal and social transformation go hand in hand, but there is no suggestion in his words that personal transformation is enough. In fact, for Gandhi, the struggle to bring about a better world involved not only stringent self-denial and rigorous adherence to the philosophy of nonviolence; it also involved a steady awareness that one person, alone, can’t change anything, an awareness that unjust authority can be overturned only by great numbers of people working together with discipline and persistence.
So this is as close as we come to find the source of real quote , UPSC has immortalized this quote now ,if you find any source or interesting article please do let me know . Have you written this essay ? Please do share some key points and dimension for this essay “Be The Change You Want To See In Others” .
As Albert Einstein once said (or most likely didn’t),
“If you are out to describe the truth, leave elegance to the tailor.”
this quote via Bryan Farrell Spare the quotations: the truth behind famous quotes .